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How To Decide Whether You Should Rent Or Buy Your Shipping Container

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Shipping containers are useful for a number of different purposes, including transportation, storage and even transformed living spaces. When you are starting to look into getting a shipping container, you will realise there are two common methods: buying it outright and renting it. Renting might seem the cheaper option but there are many advantages to buying that are often overlooked. Before you make a final decision, here are some factors you should calculate into your pros and cons of buying versus renting.

Installation Cost

When buying a shipping container, often you will need to pay the transportation cost. This can result in quite a large figure if you don't live close to the shipping container depot and is something you should find out well in advance of purchasing the container. On the other hand, when renting a shipping container often the cost of transportation, unloading, packing up and return transportation is included in the cost. Because the business wants the container back in one piece they often absorb this cost when renting. If you intend only to use a shipping container for a short time then renting it could be beneficial, even if you intend on using it for a few years.


There are some things you simply cannot do with a shipping container that you rent. Obviously, you cannot alter the structure in any way with saws or blowtorches, but you also cannot alter the paint or external decorations. Many people buy shipping containers because they want to make them their own; that is they want to redecorate and sometimes even restructure them. If you are going to purely be using the shipping container for transportation then what it looks like will hardly matter. If you are using it for long term storage then it is always suggested that you buy it so you can keep updating it with protective paint and chemicals.


There are a variety of different sized shipping containers. You may be surprised at just how many options there are, from tight little cubes all the way to the major, 40-foot long shipping containers that are used for international transportation. Buying a smaller shipping container can be much more suited to your purposes and you may be able to save money that you would have otherwise spent customising a larger shipping container to this miniature size. Before you buy a shipping container think about exactly how much space you need and whether it is simpler to transform an older shipping container or rent a new, smaller one.

For more information, contact a shipping container supplier.